Literary Criticism : ' The Unassuming And Humble Picture ' Essay

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As uttered by Albert Einstein, ‘Art is the expression of the most profound thoughts in the simplest way’. For decades, literary criticism has essentially ‘shunned’ the unassuming and humble picture book on the basis that it is somewhat jejune, and fixated upon a fallacious assertion that great popularity among readers is testimony to poor quality. This rather elitist idea is further amplified by a recurrent belief that if children 's novels are enjoyable then they simply cannot be good for children. Whoever would have thought that ‘having fun’ could cause such a commotion? Furthermore, why, in the critical sphere is fun so synonymous with immaturity and buffoonery? As human beings we share innate universals including emotional cognizance, the desire for human connection, and most importantly: the need for pleasure, exploration and play. The fantastical is a natural part of the intellectual patrimony of humankind as instinctively, we try to comprehend existential matters, especially those concerning the human condition. The fantasy genre involves a different way of apprehending existence, and ‘like feelings and emotions, imagination is one of those prickly topics with a history of exclusion from the realm of the cognitive.’ In acknowledgement of the critical power of fantasy and the picture book, this essay explores the exotic affordances of children’s literature, emphasising its power to enhance the child’s intellectual and emotional development. With explicit reference
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